Haridwar (Uttarakhand) [India], May 16 (ANI): Lakhs of devotees from far flung places gathered at 'Har ki Paudi' in Haridwar to take a holy dip in the river Ganga here on the occasion of Buddha Purnima on Monday.

With a belief that bathing in the holy river on Buddha Purnima and worshipping the river gives the benefit of immense virtue, devotees across the country reached the banks of river on Sunday night for 'Ganga Snan'.

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A devotee who came to take a dip in river, Saroj Agarwal said, "I have come here with my family to take a dip in the Ganga river. Today marks the auspicious day of Buddha Purnima, taking bath in the river on this day brings peace to mind as well the life. People have come here with their families, relatives. They are very excited."

Rajni Gupta said, "This day is very auspicious in our religion, so people in large number have gathered here to take bath in river Ganga. As you can see the crowd is too much here, but people are very excited and happy."

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"I am feeling very happy to come here. It is Buddha Purnima today and also, Monday, this is why people in large number have gathered here. Taking a dip in river after a very long time is very rejuvenating as well as peaceful," said another devotee, Monika Tyagi.

Buddha Purnima which marks as the day of incarnation of Lord Vishnu on Earth is being celebrated today this year.

To ensure the safety and avoid any law violations, district administration has taken strict measures. The police force has been deployed in the fair premises, dividing it into six zones and 18 sectors. The administration said that thousands of devotees have taken bath in the holy river till now, under strict supervision.

Circle Officer of City, Shekhar Shuyal said, "The devotees started bathing in Ganga as early at 2.00 am today. Thousands of devotees have already taken bath and the crowd in increasing continuously in Haridwar. Keeping this in view, the police department is on alert and maintaining supervision. Proper arangements have been made. The entire mela premises is divided into six zones and 18 sectors. Deputy Superintendent of Police are on duty in all six zones. Bomb disposal squad is also ready." (ANI)

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